Energy Answers Gets Court Approval for Waste-to-Energy Plant
SAN JUAN – The U.S. District Court of Puerto Rico has validated the legality of the waste-to-energy plant proposed by Energy Answers.
In a ruling issued Feb. 12, the court rejected claims by opponents that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers “had violated the Clean Water Act, and Corps’ regulations by not providing adequate public notice before issuing permits.”
The federal court’s decision reaffirms that the actions of the agency were correct, ruling that “the action of the agency was not an arbitrary, capricious or resulted in an abuse of discretion,” as claimed by opponents. The plant, which is slated to be built in Arecibo, has been opposed by numerous organizations that claim it will hurt the environment.
In a written statement, Mark J. Green, project manager and vice president of Energy Answers, said the court’s determination is one more proof that the firm has acted with correctness and proceeded in accordance with the laws in all phases of the permitting process. Green added that “once again, this confirms that the project is safe to the preservation of wetlands in the region and that the mitigation actions undertaken are suitable to ensure the resources of the area.”
He said the ruling is one more positive evaluation by an independent body, which has been validated by 24 agencies.
The project will bring an investment of $750 million to the economy of the northern region and Puerto Rico. According to studies, the construction of the project will create about 7,000 direct and indirect jobs in the construction phase and 150 direct high paying jobs and about 600 indirect jobs when it becomes operational.